Youngsters getting a pizza the action. New forum at CHFT.

Youngsters and staff at the inaugural Youth Forum meeting

Our Trust has held its first Youth Forum meeting.

The forum was the idea of Sister Louise Riby, Clinical Nurse Manager Katie Booth and the children’s team and it was set up to give young people the chance to have their say about our services. Fuelled by pizza, the ideas and feedback from the young people who attended flowed thick and fast as they toured around some of the clinical areas at CRH.

Matron Julie Mellor said, "The enthusiasm and superb feedback from the young people was both inspiring and infectious."

Our Chair Philip Lewer went along to the event too. He said: "It was a refreshing change to hear the views of young people from all backgrounds and ages. It made me feel proud to be part of the Trust."

Louise answered a few questions after the event:

Q - Why do we need a youth forum?

A youth forum allows a diverse range of children and young people to access our service.  It allows for these young people to contribute to the care provision for the future.  Not only will this aim to improve patients' wellbeing but also assist in the safe and effective delivery of care.

Q - How was the mood at the group?

As with any newly formed group nerves can play a part but as the event went on everyone started to open up and the mood became warm and friendly.  We received a wealth of feedback that we will certainly use to form our service.

Q - What will the Forum's value be to us at CHFT?

Children and young people give us a largely different view to most demographics; they are honest and open and will speak their minds.  This is the key reason why these young people will benefit our services, not just for paediatrics but also the wider hospital facilities.

Q - Are youngsters’ views as important as older people’s views for the NHS?

Young peoples' views are different but no less important than the views of the older population we serve.  They are a breath of fresh air typically and we cannot wait to work with them again!

Louise adds: "The youth forum gives an excellent opportunity for children and young people to have a real voice in the current and future healthcare provision.  I would love to hear from anyone aged 10-19 who has a passion to change our NHS for the better, with patients being the focus of our future."

If you know of anyone who might be interested in getting involved with the Youth Forum, please e-mail Louise at louise.riby@cht.nhs.uk - thanks!